Now that you've moved into your new home, it's time to set up the kitchen.
Everyone wants to cook in a classically designed kitchen that will never go out of style, but having an organized space is just as important.
Taking the time to decide in advance where to put everything for the best flow when making meals is well worth it. There are lots of helpful tips and devices that will give you an edge when you start organizing, and we have a few to share.
1. Prep for Meal Prep
First, think about what you'll need to prepare a meal. The items that you use most frequently should be stored near the preparation area. It makes sense to have a cabinet devoted to colanders, measuring cups, and cutting boards. If you have a knife block, put it on the counter above the cabinet. Then you'll be all set when you start chopping the veggies for your next culinary creation.
2. Sort Your Spices
Lazy Susans are handy to have in your kitchen cabinets, especially for small items like spices. Store everything facing outward from the middle and rotate to quickly find what you need.
Another space-saving way to store your spices is to attach a shallow spice rack to the inside of a kitchen cabinet or pantry door. You can also buy a slide-out storage tower, a narrow shelf unit that will slide right into the space by the fridge.
3. Suspended Utensils
Instead of storing all your large cooking utensils in a cluttered drawer, try hanging them on the wall over the stove. There are many different types of hanging bars, from wood to cast iron. One of those is sure to go beautifully with your kitchen décor.
After all, why do you think big spoons and spatulas all have holes in the ends of the handles?
4. Manage Magnetically
If you have an impressive set of knives, show them off on a magnetic wall strip. This is one way to eliminate kitchen drawer clutter. It also keeps the edge honed on your cutlery and allows you to grab the right knife in a jiffy.
A magnetic knife holder is a handy hack for more storage space. They're strong enough to keep your knives readily available without worry that they'll fall, and they come in different styles to match any kitchen.
5. Space-Saving Hanging
If you have a lot of pots and pans, you can get creative in how you store them. There are lovely hanging racks for cookware that are designed to hang above kitchen islands and maximize storage space.
Nothing could be more convenient than having your cookware right in front of you! If you have space above the cabinets, it's also fine to store your larger cook pots there. Just add a few plants or ceramic pieces here and there and make them part of the décor.
6. An Ideal Island
Speaking of a kitchen island, it can be a bonanza when it comes to extra storage space. Open shelves at each end are convenient for cookbooks and catch-all baskets. One of the handiest ways to use the built-in cabinets in the middle is to install shallow pull-out drawers inside. This ends up being a great place to store those long pans and large bowls that are hard to fit elsewhere.
7. Lunchbox Lab
One helpful suggestion if you make school lunches is to have a cabinet or large drawer especially for lunch supplies. This can be the place to store lunch boxes out of sight, as well as keep the items you'll need to use daily. Keep sandwich and snack bags here, along with small resealable containers for side items. You can also store lunch-sized bags of chips and individual packs of raisins and cookies for quick school lunch preparation.
8. Stacking Cans
It makes sense to store canned goods together, but sometimes it can be a chore trying to find out what's behind all the cans in a full pantry. A graduated shelf stacker is the perfect helper for keeping things organized. You can buy one, or even make one yourself by stacking small boards in your cupboard. The idea is to elevate each successive row of cans like rows in a movie theater so you can see what's in each of them.
9. Dinner on Display
A cookbook stand is invaluable in the kitchen. You don't want to get the pristine cookbook pages dirty, and it's easier to read when it's propped up. A clear acrylic stand with a page protector is your best bet. To check your family's weekly schedule without digging through desk clutter, post it on the inside of a kitchen cabinet door. Not only will it be easy to find, but you'll get a look at it every time you open that cabinet.
10. De-Cluttered Cleaning Cabinet
The area under the kitchen sink is one of the most challenging to organize. Most people keep a variety of cleaners and cleaning tools there, along with dishwashing gloves, rags, and other kitchen necessities. A handy way to organize all this clutter is to use large plastic tubs for similar items.
For example, you can place a clean pile of dishrags in its own tub with dishwashing gloves on top. Storing cleaners in one tub and dishwasher detergent and pot scrubbers in another keeps things neat, and it's easier to pull the tubs out and look for what you need.
Arranging your items in a logical flow for preparing meals and washing up is a good start. Finding those little helpers that make things more organized will also make a difference in designing a kitchen for your active family. The best ideas are those that not only help you find everything but add style and flair to your home. Get going and enjoy setting up your new kitchen!